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Rutherglen, Victoria - Rich wine, deep soul and character

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Rutherglen - Rich wine, deep soul and character

Rutherglen is blessed with some of the world’s richest wines, deep soul and character, the powerful Murray, ancient river red gums, idyllic pastoral scenes and history. It has wonderful cuisine and homely meals, cosy B&Bs and luxury accommodation, great festivals and genuine characters.

Although not on the Murray River, Rutherglen’s wonderful wine region is fed by the water of the Murray River and fantastic town to experience just off the river.

It is a region where over 150 years of dedication and commitment have combined with a unique climate, skill and vibrancy to create a wine region that is truly full of flavour. It is a gem amongst Australia’s wine regions. For James Halliday, Australia’s premier wine commentator, it is: “One of the truly great wine tourism destinations”.

The name Rutherglen is synonymous with wines to fortify, invigorate, warm, enjoy and, best of all, to leave you with a memorable tasting experience. The region embraces 19 members of The Winemakers of Rutherglen and 3 boutique wineries, each with their own history and expertise, which collectively can provide you with a mixed case that will ensure lasting memories of your visit to this New South Wales - Victoria border wine wonderland.

Many wineries are still run by the descendants of the original families, who have used their traditions and experience to produce a range of quality red and white table wines and fortifieds that rank among the best in the world. The wineries are open for tasting and sales daily, as well as holding special events during the year.

The pinnacle of Rutherglen’s wine elegance is expressed by the ambience of the All Saints Estate which has developed from the original castle built in 1864. Rutherglen has developed as an important centre for wine-growing in the state. It produces full-bodied dry reds, delicate whites, and sherry, port and muscats of great distinction.

Rutherglen has developed as an important centre for wine-growing in the state. It produces full-bodied dry reds, delicate whites, and sherry, port and muscats of great distinction. The Rutherglen Winery Walkabout held every Queen's Birthday weekend is a major drawcard.

The region is not just about food and wine. It is steeped in history, its fabric shaped by gold miners, boom, bust, generations of farmers, shopkeepers, sportsmen, churchmen and the mighty Murray. There are old mine sites, grand old homesteads, idyllic farmscapes, classic shopfronts, footy grounds, some of Australia’s best golf courses nearby and lawn tennis courts, grand old churches and convents, sandy beaches and shady billabongs.

Rutherglen History

First named Wahgunyah Rush in the 1850s its name was changed to Rutherglen, so the story goes, by the owner of the Star Hotel, John Wallace, when he met the challenge from David Glen Hamilton and patrons, that they 'would name the town Rutherglen after his birthplace [in Scotland], if he shouted them drinks'. 'Right you are' was the fast and loud reply.

Gold was found in the Rutherglen area in July 1860, with the first strike in Rutherglen itself on 9 September 1860 when a shaft was bottomed on gold, near Drummond Street. But the rush was short-lived. Many of the miners decided to settle down and took up growing vines. The first vines were planted around the 1850s and expanded to such an extent that by 1880s the Rutherglen-Wahgunyah area was becoming Victoria's wine-producing district. The dreaded disease phylloxera (root aphids) nearly wiped out the industry in the late 1890s.

Places of Interest

Gold Battery High Street, Rutherglen. Constructed in 1908 to crush the gold-bearing quartz and extract gold, the plant was originally powered by steam, then gas and now electricity.

Court House (1864 ) Lord Street

Rutherglen Historical Society Murray Street. Formerly the Common School, it was built in 1872, extensions added in 1874 and was in use until 1908.

St Stephens Church High Street, Rutherglen was dedicated in 1865. It comes complete with a central turret, topped by a belfry and open work 'bell cage'. The stainless steel spire, an exact replica of the earlier wooden one, was installed in 1984.

Victoria Hotel The original 'Victoria' was constructed in Drummond Street. It is said that Ned Kelly, the bushranger, was a regular visitor when he worked for G F Morris at Fairfield vineyard. In 1863 The Victoria moved to its present site in Main Street. The present hotel was built in the 1890s.

Poachers Paradise formerly The Rutherglen Hotel (1860) Main Street was built as the 'Golden Ball'. At that time it housed the booking office of the Bevan Coach Line (Cobb & Co) which serviced the Wahgunyah to Melbourne run.

The building, Clydesdale Cellars, on the corner of Drummond and Main streets was constructed in 1886 by David Hamilton as one of the first cellars in the district. Oscar Seppelt purchased it in 1915 and extensions and alterations have taken place over the years. It is now operated by Jolimont Wines. Open: Mon-Fri 9am-5pm, Sat 9am-1pm. Tours:  Mon-Fri 10am, 11am, 1pm, 2pm, 3pm & 4pm Sat 11am.

Lake King and Gardens front onto Murray Street, Rutherglen and were established in 1800s. A swimming pool, golf course and caravan park are within the area.

Lake Moodemere: A natural lake was reserved in 1889 as a preserve for wildlife. It is home to a large variety of birdlife and wildlife, ranging from Australian pelicans, black swans, parrots and cockatoos. It is also base for the Moodemere-Corowa Water Ski Club. Due to its sheltered location it is ideal for water-skiing and is the site of the world rated, Moodemere Masters Ski Tournament, held towards the end of January each year.

Rutherglen Main Events and Festivals

  • Monthly Farmers Market - 2nd Sunday of the month
  • Lake Moodemere Regatta - January
  • Taste of Rutherglen - March
  • Annual Art and Photography Exhibition - March
  • Winery Walkabout - June
  • Sculpture Trail - end of October to start of November

Murray River towns close by:

Down River - Corowa Dump pointWahgunyahHowlong Dump pointYarrawonga Dump pointMulwala Dump pointCobram RV FriendlyDump point
Up River - WodongaAlbury Dump pointTallangatta Dump pointCorryong RV FriendlyDump point
Capital Cities - Melbourne 321km • Sydney 599km • Canberra 384km • Adelaide 862km

Rutherglen Wine Experience & Visitor Information Centre

Rutherglen Wine Experience & Visitor Information Centre

57 Main Street, Rutherglen Victoria 3685
PO Box 131, Rutherglen Victoria 3685
Free Call: 1800 622 871
Open: 7 days a week - 9am to 5pm

Explore Rutherglen

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